Buying a car is a huge purchase, but it doesn’t have to break the bank; it can be easy if you take the time to save money strategically. Check out the four helpful tips below.
1. Set a budget
Your budget will ultimately decide what kind of car you buy. Set a realistic budget to narrow your search. Find a car that meets your needs that also fits within your budget. When it comes time to purchase it, you’ll have the correct amount of money in the bank.
2. Set a time frame
Choose a time frame for when you want to buy the car. If you’re starting to save from scratch, be sure to give yourself a realistic amount of time. Most cars can take at least a year to save for, if not longer. Once you’ve set your time frame, divide the amount you want to spend by the number of months you have to save–and put aside that amount each month.
3. Cut your excess spending
The best habit to get into when saving for anything big is to cut out any extraneous spending. Look at your daily habits, and see if there’s anything you’re unnecessary spending money on. For example, you can make coffee at home in the mornings instead of buying an expensive cup at the cafe, or you can unplug appliances in your home when you’re not using them, in order to cut down your utility bills.
Making small, conscious changes over the year or two you’re trying to save for a car will reduce the amount of financial stress you feel while you save.
4. Reward yourself
Saving can be hard and it can make your life feel a little less cushy, so when you reach your savings goals you should celebrate. Set smaller savings goals along the way, and when you reach them, have friends over for dinner, go on a fun excursion, or indulge in a meal you wouldn’t have otherwise .
Rewarding yourself while saving will give you more incentive to be smart with your money, and you won’t have to feel like you’re skimping while you do.